On 1st January 2017, I pledged not to buy any newly produced clothing for one year. In fact I intended not to buy any items, including previously-owned, but gave myself some leeway, just in case.
I’ve failed. But I’m not defeated.
The first 6-months of the pledge has honed my awareness and intention around my personal style, size of wardrobe, and efforts in supporting sustainable fashion practises.
I always had plenty of excuses for owning too many clothes. Here are just four commonly held beliefs;
- I love clothing; it’s a passion and profession therefore I can and should indulge
- I have the know-how to mix and match pieces, so the more I have the more I can create endless combinations
- As a stylist, or simply a woman for that matter, I’m expected to dress differently all the time, while supporting seasonal trends
- I’d get bored if I owned any less
Of course these were just excuses. They served me well in not committing to find and actively pursue a better way of living with less, while feeling adequate.
These excuses fuelled my desire to believe I could look better, feel better when I bought the next best piece. Excuses to have more clothing was also my way of avoiding today’s practise of body acceptance.
So I began to purge. I threw out 178 wardrobe items in the first 6 months!
Of those, 87 pieces went to charity. The remaining 91 pieces went to my local consignment store (81 items sold and the 10 unsold were then donated)
I’m beginning to enjoy the benefits of owning less. Yet I’m still working through each season, to further refine and minimise each seasonal ‘capsule’.
I’ve not gotten down to any prescribed capsule number, like Project 333 recommend, (33 items for 3 months). But I’m minimising at the pace that works for me.
In fact I bought 21 items in those 6 months. Most thrifted, and others bought from local or sustainable brands. All carefully selected pieces which have build a strong all-seasons ‘basics’ wardrobe.
My pledge still stands, in whatever state it’s in, because it continues to focus me. It helps me remain intentional, and the spin-off to all this is I’m more comfortable in my body.
Mindfulness around my wardrobe separates ME from my clothes.
I’m learning to enjoy and appreciate both more fully!
The 2017 journey continues!